Adjusting building thermostats for environmental gains – a pilot study

This note was reviewed and retained for legacy in November 2018.

This paper discusses a pilot study which involved altering the thermostat set-points to 2-3°C above the normal summer setting in two air-conditioned buildings during a Brisbane subtropical summer. It was expected that this minor temperature change would reduce energy usage for air-conditioning which would in turn, reduce greenhouse gas emissions. The aim of this project was to measure the social, economic and environmental value of a different approach to thermal comfort, facilities management, corporate culture and acceptance of the benign subtropical climate.

This paper presents the findings of the research, including ‘lessons learned’ and a set of strategies that may be used by facilities managers who adopt a similar initiative, to ensure that users of buildings are positively engaged and consistent protocols are communicated to all stakeholders. The research that informed this study is discussed in the companion paper: Adjusting building thermostats for environmental gains – understanding the issues.

note summary
  1. Introduction
  2. Project setting
  3. Measuring resource usage
  4. Main findings
  5. Recommendations